Bridge Loans…your bank hates them but they can be a great financial tool when buying….

Bridge loans are short-term loans that bridge the gap between two different closing dates.  More commonly used when an existing homeowner sells their home, and buys another home, with two different closing dates.   But bridge loans have become a very popular way to take possession of that new home while it’s empty for 2 or 3 weeks to allow for renos.   Best of all, it’s really inexpensive!

In the past, most homebuyers would have their selling and buying dates match.   It’s always been a bit of a juggling act as you have to pack your moving truck and unpack it, all in less than a day.   Somehow, everyone manages to get it done… but you talk about one of the most stressful days in your life….moving ranks right up there!   Throw in some kids, maybe a dog, and a house full of stuff and you have a real chore on your hands….

More buyers are taking a more relaxed approach.   Bridge Loans are gaining in popularity.. It allows for a more relaxed move over a 2 or 3 day period… or in the case of renos, maybe 2 or 3 weeks.    It’s certainly less stressful and could even save you money if you are doing a bigger reno…(contractors could end up charging you a little more if they have to deal with a family living in the house during renos).

Let’s take a look at one example on how much Bridge Financing works and what it costs…

In this example we’ll use a couple that sold for $400k.   Closing is November 1.   There is an existing mortgage of $250k.    They bought another house for $600k.   Closing is November 22.  They will spend $50k in renos for a new kitchen and bathroom.   They want a $450k mortgage to cover renos, closing costs and take out some money for personal use.   Here’s how the Bridge loan works:

  • Bridge loan amount would be $150k… we calculate this by taking the Purchase price ($600k) less the new mortgage amount ($450k).
  • Rate of interest will vary but it’s around Prime plus 2.00% (today’s prime rate is 3.00%).
  • Lender admin fees range from $250 to $500.
  • Legal fees vary depending on Lender and Lawyer… $200 to $400.
  • Interest costs are $20.55 per day.  Total interest would be $287.70.
  • Overall total cost of the Bridge Loan would be between $737 and $1200 depending on your lawyer’s legal fees and Lender admin fees.

Some qualification, limitations and risks when getting a Bridge Loan.

  • Bridge Loans are only offered by the mortgage provider for your new home.  It’s a product most Banks don’t like to offer as there is really no profit for them.  They get nervous about the possibility of your existing home not closing.   There is some exposure and risk to the Bank… it’s limited but it’s there.
  • Your lawyer will be required to provide an undertaking to register a mortgage if the sale of your existing home collapses (that’s not a common occurrence but it can happen).
  • Speaking of sales… you must have entered into a firm sale on your current home to qualify for a Bridge Loan.
  • Lenders will only offer a Bridge Loan equal to the down payment required for your new home.  This amount cannot be greater than the equity remaining in your current home.
  • There is also the option of obtaining Private Lender bridge financing but this is more expensive and should only be considered as a last alternative.

Standing back and looking at the big picture, I think most of us would be happy to pay $700 to $2,000 for sake of being able to have an empty house for 2 to 4 weeks to do a clean up or reno, etc.

If you need more info on how Bridge loans work or need help with a situation, call me anytime.  Always happy to help.

Steve Garganis

steve@mortgagenow.ca

416 224 0114

12 Responses to “Bridge Loans…your bank hates them but they can be a great financial tool when buying….”

  1. brian Says:

    do you have a detailed list of what lenders charge for the admin fee?

    • Steve Garganis Says:

      Hi Brian,

      Most Lenders charge an admin fee of around $250. But we can get this covered or waived with most lenders when we arrange the final mortgage… let me know if you need help with this..

      Steve

      • Eric Says:

        So, if I negociate this, the bridge loan can be interests only ?

        I’m selling on July 11 at 318,000$. Buying at 484,500$ on July 18. Actual mortgage left to pay is 187,700$.

        How much shall I expect to pay for a bridge ?

      • Steve Garganis Says:

        Hi Eric,

        There more details required for me to answer… but if we use your numbers, your bridge loan would be $296,800. Bridge loan rates vary but we can use Prime plus 2.00% (3.00% + 2.00% = 5.00%). Cost is around $41/day. So a bridge loan for 7 days would cost $287. Some Lenders will charge an admin fee… $200 to $500… or nothing…
        But you may not have enough equity in your current home for a $296k bridge loan.. You may need to increase your mortgage slightly… This requires more explaining.. If you want more info, just drop me a line or give me a call.

        Steve Garganis steve@mortgagenow.ca 416 224 0114

      • angela charmain Says:

        Difficult situation, would really appreciate your input.
        Most kindly,

        Angela Stewart

      • Steve Garganis Says:

        Hi Angela, call me at my office on Tuesday. I’ll help you as best I can.

  2. gordon cameron Says:

    we have sold our house for 330k we are buying a new home 315k we need to bridge for 4 days our problem is we do not have a mortgage and our bank is not to keen on helping us bridging because we are not going to have a mortgage we have all paperwork for sale there are no conditions is there any options

  3. rob Says:

    My question is this…our house has been valued at roughly 500k and will be going on the market shortly. We hope to buy the next one for 350k(ish) and move before selling this one. Lifestyle makes it very inconvenient to show current home…night shift work throughout all seven days. We have no mortgage, but little cash. Would we therefore not be eligible for a short term loan from the bank? I would expect that the collateral from the unsold house would satisfy any risk concerns that the bank might have…especially since they have no problems risking OUR money on sketchy investment vehicles. Any help would be appreciated.

  4. Jennifer Says:

    Hello,
    Helpful article – thank you. one question though about this statement – “Lenders will only offer a Bridge Loan equal to the down payment required for your new home.”…. Are you saying that in this situation where the down payment is 5% of 600K that they would not get a bridge loan for greater than 30K?


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